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Orange County RCFL Opens for Business

Washington, D.C. January 05, 2011
  • FBI National Press Office (202) 324-3691

FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III, along with local area law enforcement officials, today opened the Orange County Regional Computer Forensics Laboratory (OCRCFL) in a ribbon-cutting ceremony in Santa Ana, California. The OCRCFL is part of the RCFL program, a national network of FBI-sponsored, full-service forensics laboratories and training centers devoted entirely to the examination of digital evidence in support of federal, state, and local criminal and terrorism investigations.

Left to right: U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr.; FBI Los Angeles Assistant Director in Charge Steven Martinez; FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III; Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas; Anaheim Police Department Chief of Police John Welter; Oran

Left to right: U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr.; FBI Los Angeles Assistant Director in Charge Steven Martinez; FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III; Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas; Anaheim Police Department Chief of Police John Welter; Orange County Sheriff's Department Assistant Sheriff Mike James; Westminster Chief of Police Mitch Waller.

 

RCFLs provide objective, expert digital forensics services to law enforcement, including court testimony. FBI-certified RCFL personnel strictly adhere to proven objective processes, procedures, and protocols to produce results that are repeatable and verifiable—two critical aspects in the proper practice of digital forensics.

FBI Director Mueller said, “Since the late 1990s, computer forensics examiners at RCFLs have helped investigators solve crimes in support of national security, criminal, and cyber cases. Law enforcement remains determined to defeat our enemies through innovative partnerships such as RCFLs that benefit and protect not just the local communities they serve, but the nation as a whole.”

Director Mueller selected the FBI Los Angeles Division in 2008 for an RCFL. The following year, officials from the Anaheim Police Department, California Department of Toxic Substances Control, Fullerton Police Department, Irvine Police Department, Newport Beach Police Department, Orange County District Attorney’s Office, Orange County Sheriff’s Department, Santa Ana Police Department, and the Westminster Police Department formally entered into a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with the FBI, making them participating agencies in the RCFL program.

Left to right: U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr.; FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III; Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas; FBI Los Angeles Assistant Director in Charge Steven Martinez

Left to right: U.S. Attorney André Birotte Jr.; FBI Director Robert S. Mueller, III; Orange County District Attorney Tony Rackauckas; FBI Los Angeles Assistant Director in Charge Steven Martinez

 

An MOU is the legal basis for the operation of an RCFL and vests control of all operations with the local executive board while maintaining the federal, state, and local government balance. By opening its doors to 250 law enforcement agencies within the Central District of California, the OCRCFL has joined the most fully accredited digital forensics laboratory network in the world, according to the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors/Laboratory Accreditation Board.

The widespread use of electronic equipment to facilitate criminal activity, hostile intelligence activities, and terrorism has resulted in an increased number of investigations where digital media is seized for analysis. In fiscal year (FY) 2010, RCFL personnel conducted approximately 6,985 digital forensics examinations and accepted more than 6,500 requests for assistance. In addition to providing digital forensics expertise, the OCRCFL will train local law enforcement in various digital forensics techniques. Since FY 2003, the RCFL program has trained approximately 38,150 law enforcement personnel worldwide.

For more information about the RCFL program, visit www.rcfl.gov; and visit www.ocrcfl.org to learn about the OCRCFL.